Farsot – Insects (Prophecy Productions/Lupus Lounge)

Sunday, 24th March 2013
Rating: 7.5/10

“Progressive black metal” is a term that should be banished from the ranks. Actually, anything involving “progressive” should be the last thing uttered when describing any kind of music, and that includes the nerdy forays of Dream Theater, Symphony X, and Yes, which in layman’s terms, is “prog.” Reason being, Germany’s Farsot have brandished themselves with the progressive black metal tag for their third album Insects, and it’s as bemusing as the string of letters and numbers the band uses for its individual members. Bemusing!

When getting down to business, it’s hard to poke holes in Farsot’s approach, for the bulk of the album’s eight tracks are crisp and clean, practically immune to the bloated nature of a lot of black metal bands. Thanks to a sporty production job (i.e. everything is crystal clear), the band’s riff tactics are bolstered, most notably on “Adamantine Chains,” which unloads on the listener after a carefully-constructed interlude (“7”), then it turns into the album’s most jarring moment.

Because the Germans are prone to head down atmospheric joyrides (see: “Empyrean” and “The Vermillion Trail”), it’s probably why they want to assume the progressive tag. But to get the most bang for your buck, the headstrong black metal tactics spewed forth on “Like Flakes of Rust,” “Perdition” and “Withdrawl” are probably the way to go. The band’s hot/cold Satyricon element is one to latch onto, especially on “Withdrawl,” where spoken-word chants and primal riff-action wouldn’t be out of reach for the dastardly Satyr/Frost duo.

Hard to imagine Insects landing well with the troo and necro crowd; it’s too pristine and lean, compounded by the fact that these songs wouldn’t satiate those looking for an easy listen. Farsot should be emboldened by this, not deterred. With some tinkering, they could be at the forefront of the next wave of black metal.

www.myspace.com/farsotband

(This content originally appeared on Blistering.com)